Apple Removes Russian Social Media App Apple Insider is supported by your audience, and as an Amazon Associate and Affiliate, you can earn commissions on qualified purchases. These affiliate associations do not affect our editorial content. Apple removed Russia’s largest social networking app, VKontakte, from the App Store, along with a host of other apps from the developer. VKontakte, a popular Russian social networking app with millions of downloads, has disappeared from the App Store. So far, the reason for the removal has not been revealed. VK, the company behind the app, released a statement on Monday that was discovered by The Verge. It notified users that several of its apps were removed from the App Store.
Apps were removed from the App Store
These include the classified applications Mail.ru, VK Music and Youla. The statement informs users that an app already installed on a compatible device will continue to work. However, users may experience issues with notifications or payments. They also informed users that they can still use VKontakte through mobile browsers and the desktop app. In March, Apple stopped all online sales in Russia following the invasion of Ukraine. Sales did not resume from September. Apple stopped all online sales in Russia.
In recent days, several US technology companies have taken action in response to the invasion of Ukraine. The last to join has been Apple, which has suspended the sale of all its products in Russia, according to Mark German ( Bloomberg ). In addition, those from Cupertino took measures to prevent the spread of propaganda, as they removed the Russia Today (RT) and Sputnik applications from the App Store in almost the entire world, except Russia. Finally, they turned off Apple Maps traffic and incident tracking in Ukraine.
At this time, you can check for yourself that the Russian Apple Store has suspended the sale of any product. On the purchase pages of all devices, the message “currently out of stock” is observed , the same text that appears when there is no stock.
“Apple stands with all the people who are suffering as a result of the violence. Last week we stopped all exports to our sales channel in the country [Russia]. Apple Pay and other services have been limited. We are supporting humanitarian efforts, providing aid for the unfolding refugee crisis and doing everything we can to support our teams in the region.”
Regarding the “goodbye” of RT and Sputnik from the App Store, in various regions of the world it is still possible to download their applications. However, it is possible that this is due to a gradual withdrawal that will take effect in a matter of hours. On February 27, the European Union vetoed both media to stop their wave of “lies and misinformation” during the armed conflict.
Blocked the YouTube channels of RT
Google followed the same path, as they blocked the YouTube channels of RT and Sputnik just a few hours ago. Of course, the measure is only in force in European territory. Twitter, for its part, now specifies that RT is a Russian government-affiliated media outlet, while Facebook and Instagram have restricted access to the profiles of such outlets across the European Union.
It is worth mentioning that, in the case of Twitter and Facebook , Russia responded to their actions by partially blocking them. It is possible, then, that they also act before the measures of Apple and Google.